Updated: September 3, 2021 7:01:29 am
The financial issues plaguing the Sinhgad Technical Education Society (STES) in Pune have worsened, with Bank of Baroda citing STES as a defaulter in payments for two of its campuses in the city.
Bank of Baroda’s auction and sale notice has cited pending dues for STES campuses located at Warje and Vadgaon. The notice on September 2, 2021, mentions that STES has defaulted to a total of Rs 193.28 crore.
The bank has scheduled its site visit on September 17 and has permitted potential bidders also to do the same with prior notice. All interested parties are expected to submit the aforementioned Earnest Money Deposit worth Rs 11.70 crore and Rs 75.22 crore, respectively, for the two campuses, along with a bid application by September 22. Upon submission of the same, the bidders can participate in an e-auction scheduled for September 23.
When contacted, STES officials refused to comment on the matter.
STES mainly offers courses in engineering and technology, architecture, pharmacy and commerce. It has colleges located at Warje, Narhe, Vadgaon, Ambegaon, Kondhwa, Erandwane and Pirangut in Pune, and is affiliated to the Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU). The group also has colleges in Lonavala and Mumbai.
This is not the first time STES has been embroiled in financial irregularities. In 2017 and 2018, the Society was pulled up by the Bombay High Court after 4,000 teaching and non-teaching staff staged a protest over salaries that were unpaid for 15 months. The matter was taken up by the SPPU, which reported the matter to the Charity Commissioner, Pune.
The Commissioner’s office had ordered the removal of M N Navale from the post of president and trustee of STES.
In 2018, the court had also directed STES to pay all salary dues from the Rs 117 crore with the Society, which was deposited under social welfare funds.
In another instance, STES and the Central Bank of India were booked by the Central Bureau of Investigation for allegedly jointly conspiring to get a bank loan of Rs 58 crore cleared. The loan was sought for the construction of a new building for a dental college, which was never built.
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